A Smooth Guide ...
SUNBURY and SUNBURY ON THAMES
People, places and things of interest in Sunbury, Shepperton, Ashford, Hampton, Hampton Court, Staines upon Thames
Sunbury Court, a fine Georgian mansion overlooking part of the River Thames, is about 14 miles from London.
Preserving much of its 'old world charm', quiet atmosphere and absolute privacy – features which influenced its selection as venue for the first High Council – Sunbury Court forms part of the neighbourhood and village mentioned in history at the time of Edward the Confessor (1042-1066) who ‘confirmed the manor unto the Abbot of Westminster’.
In the 16th Century, its green fields and wooded slopes were included in a grant of land given under the Great Seal of England ‘to one Sir Robert Killigrew, Knight, in the Manor of Colkemington - now familiarly known as Kempton.
During Plantagenet times (1154-1485), an era of colourful costumes and gallant courtiers, Sunbury itself was a favourite resort of councillors and Kings. The manor was a royal palace and tradition has it that Sunbury House was used as an annexe, being renamed Sunbury Court following a disastrous fire.
Historical associations are enriched by the close proximity of the beautiful and royal Windsor Castle, a few miles upstream. Almost equally famous, Hampton Court faces the broad river near Kingston-upon-Thames.
Although Sunbury Court has seen few structural alterations, changes in ownership show that it passed from one notable family to another, finally entering the possession of a military colonel in retirement. Coming on the property market, it was brought to the notice of General Bramwell Booth who was seeking some such place for the establishment of a Staff College – a project near to his heart – and purchased it for The Salvation Army at a very reasonable figure in 1925.